My daily path includes Him


Jim Honeycutt

Chaplain-Baptist Minister

Up early on a recent Saturday morning, to get ready for the annual Chisolm Trail Parade, I greeted the sun as I sipped my coffee from my favorite spot in the backyard. I love coming out here first thing, starting without all the daily morning talk shows in my ear spewing the latest gossip.

Being an early riser has benefits I enjoy immensely, such as listening to the choruses of bird’s song. Or watching the squirrels chase each other around the pecan tree to the entertainment of my Vizsla. I also find that as I prepare for the day mentally, emotionally and most importantly, spiritually, this calm place encourages me, strengthens me, refuels me. Yet it’s not the place (my backyard) or the time of day (early morning) that actually accomplishes this infusion of peace in my heart, it’s with whom I spend this time. 

My Father, as his father, were men of the soil. Their days began well before sunrise. With long hard toil on the farm laid out before them, my grandfather taught my Father to start each morning reading The Word of God. To plant the truth of Scripture deep within his being. To acknowledge The Lord God from the start of each new day. To talk with Jesus in prayer, yielding our ways to His ways. 

I like to think of it like this: Before his shoes touched the dirt, God’s word touched his heart. Before he planted one cotton seed in the rich black soil, he planted God’s Rich Truth in his life. 

And so my Father taught me each morning of my youth. At the breakfast table, before we ate. We read The Word. We received The Word. We prayed The Word. 

So, as it was then in my life, it is now. The Holy Word of God is living and active cutting through all the ways the world would tie me down. All the ways the world would box me in. All the ways the world would try and drain God’s Peace from my heart.

I run each morning whole heartily to the place of my deliverance and tarry there throughout the day. I haven’t always appreciated the tremendous blessing of having my Creator so close by, but friend I can tell you I certainly do now.

The trials though many, become pathways of trust that lead to a place beyond my hope. And it is only because of Jesus’s hand upon my being that my walk hasn’t fallen away long ago. The resolve is not mine, but His. The faith is not mine, but His. The strength to endure is not mine, but His. Yet, the Hope and Joy are mine, because I am His. 

Since my parents’ passing, I warmly remember with the joy the moments spent just sitting in their presence. Moments soaking up and soaking in the strength I found just spending time with them. But the joy, the peace, I felt with them, the strength they exuded, came directly from The One they had spent their lives pursuing.

My thoughts continued pondering all this, even as we arrived at our friends house which had a prime view of the parade.  I found a spot in the shade and sat among our friends, many who had young children running and playing. Just sitting under the shade of the tree in the cool of the morning, hearing the laughter of not only the children, but the adults did my heart good. I was blessed to see the joy on the faces of the young.

Next to me, as the parade progressed, a mother was consoling her daughter who was frightened by something she saw. I hear the mother gently encouraging her little one to calm her fears, but the little girl seems inconsolable. Finally the mother say’s, “It’s Ok to be scared….. but It’s not Ok to stay there. We are moving on!” And with that she led her child to focus on something else. That my friend is a powerful truth.

That is the strength we need from those who know. Teaching our young, fear is only what we allow it to be. The strength of a mother’s heart manifested to teach her child truth. Your Creator does that, and greater… For God’s Word is the path to true understanding. And those paths start early in the morning for me, sitting in my favorite spot in the backyard watching the Sunrise.


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